July 13, 2024

Bucks: Companies That Make Gay Couples Marry to Get Benefits

At least a few big companies in New York — Corning, I.B.M. and Raytheon — are now requiring their gay employees to marry if they want health coverage for their same-sex partners.

After all, the logic goes, it’s only fair. Many straight people have to marry to make their spouses eligible for coverage. So why shouldn’t gay people be subject to the same requirement in states like New York where they’re now permitted to marry?

The answer is that it’s complicated. As several legal experts point out, some same-sex couples can run into problems because the federal government does not recognize gay marriage. Requiring a couple to marry to become eligible for benefits could make it difficult to adopt a child from a country that doesn’t recognize gay unions, for instance. Immigration is another potential minefield.

What do you think employers should do? Should they keep domestic partner benefits for same-sex couples since the federal law is inconsistent with certain state laws? Do you know of other employers who are making marriage a requirement in states where it’s legal?

Article source: http://feeds.nytimes.com/click.phdo?i=98fa5e43f8114905838d7c17d11c45f9

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